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Participation in NAEP 2012 Is Important to Our Nation

Students, find information about what participating in NAEP means for you


Your participation helps NAEP measure educational progress across the nation

"The Nation's Report Card describes student achievement in ways that inform policymakers and educators. It's a really valuable resource."
Teacher: Rockville, MD

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) reports on student achievement, instructional experiences, and school environment factors across the nation. It is the only measure of how the nation's students are performing in various subject areas and informs us how student performance has changed over time. The NAEP results are reported as The Nation's Report Card.

It is important that all selected schools and students participate in NAEP. Full participation of all selected students and schools enables NAEP to provide the most accurate and representative picture of student academic performance. Elected officials, policymakers, and educators all use NAEP results to develop ways to improve education.

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Your school and your students represent thousands of schools and students across the nation

"As a teacher, my constant focus is to help students make progress in the classroom. NAEP helps with this mission by creating a common measure of student achievement across the country."
Teacher: Miami Beach, FL

Since NAEP is not designed to report results for individual students or schools, it is not necessary to assess every student in every school. Instead, an accurate picture of student performance is obtained by administering NAEP to a sample of students who represent the student population.

To ensure that a representative sample of students is assessed, NAEP is given in a sample of schools whose students reflect the varying demographics of a specific jurisdiction, be it the nation, a state, or a district. Within each selected school and grade to be assessed, students are chosen at random to participate in NAEP. Every student has the same chance of being chosen—regardless of race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, disability, status as an English language learner, grades, or any other factors.

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Students will participate in one of three assessments

"I was very impressed with NAEP's implementation. All the parents, teachers, and the children at the school felt very comfortable."
Principal: Fair Lawn, NJ

During the 2011-2012 school year, students at ages 9, 13, and 17 will be assessed in mathematics and reading as part of the NAEP long-term trend assessment. This assessment has been tracking the educational progress of our nation's students in reading since 1971 and in mathematics since 1973. Find out why NAEP tests students in these three age groups.

In addition, from January through March 2012, NAEP administered an assessment in economics (grade 12), and a pilot study of the computer-based writing assessment (grade 4). The table below displays the NAEP administration schedule for the 2011-2012 school year.

Age or Grade  Assessment Type Subject Assessment Window 
9-year-olds Long-term trend Mathematics, Reading January 9, 2012—
March 16, 2012
13-year-olds Long-term trend Mathematics, Reading October 10, 2011—
December 16, 2011
17-year-olds Long-term trend Mathematics, Reading March 19, 2012—
May 25, 2012
Grade 12 Main NAEP Economics January 23, 2012—
March 2, 2012
Grade 4 Main NAEP Writing (computer-based pilot study) January 23, 2012—
March 2, 2012

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Many resources are available for participants in NAEP

"NAEP makes state-to-state comparisons reliable. Right now every state has different state standards and different criteria for meeting those standards."
Principal: Rockton, IL

NAEP Test Yourself.  Try out actual questions administered to students in the NAEP assessments.

NAEP Questions Tool.  Search, sort, and print sample NAEP questions.

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Last updated 26 April 2012 (EP)
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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education